These pictures and stimuli progress systematically to teach children more than 90 concepts they need for success in school.
- Learn 90 concepts critical to school success
- Understand spatial, attribute, quantitative, temporal, and comparative/superlative concepts
Busy clinicians rely on the SPARC series for:
- convenience and portability
- systematic progression of activities
- tons of practice opportunities
- easy measures of progress
- loads of pictures and stimuli
- use with a variety of treatment approaches
The lessons are organized in five units. Each concept is presented with its opposite or a negative example when no opposite is available. The units are:
- Spatial—above/below, around/through, between, and more
- Attributes—large/small, heavy/light, same/different, and more
- Quantity—more/less, whole/half, pair, and more
- Temporal—before/after and beginning/end
- Comparatives/Superlatives—tall/taller/tallest, short/shorter/shortest, and more
Each concept is taught in this progression:
- Concept Example Pictures—ten pictures illustrate the target concept(s) and its opposite
- Contrast Pictures—nine mini-scenes each contain two or three examples of the target concept and its opposite
- Concept Scenes—one full-page scene contains multiple examples of the target concept and non-examples of the concept. The scene has directions and questions for receptive and expressive practice.
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- Direct and indirect instruction of vocabulary words helps students boost reading comprehension and improve performance for semantic tasks (NRP, 2000).
- Impairment in the ability to comprehend concepts will negatively affect communication and should be targeted for intervention (ASHA, 2000).
- Students need to understand semantic connections among words. It may be necessary to target understanding of basic concepts that underpin the vocabulary required to access the curriculum (Taylor-Goh, 2005).
- Vocabulary differences in children with high vocabulary skills compared to children with low vocabulary skills can be as much as 4,000 root words in the 2nd grade. Children who are struggling will not "catch up" in their vocabulary development without direct instruction on meaningful words over multiple trials (Biemiller, 2003).
SPARC for Concepts incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). (2000). Guidelines for roles and responsibilities of the school-based speech-language pathologist [Guidelines]. Retrieved on August 3, 2009, from www.asha.org/docs/html/GL2000-00053.html
Biemiller, A. (2003). Vocabulary: Needed if more children are to read well. Reading Psychology, 24, 323-335.
National Reading Panel (NRP). (2000). Teaching children to read: An evidence-based assessment of the scientific research literature on reading and its implications for reading instruction-Reports of the subgroups. Retrieved July 31, 2009, from www.nichd.nih.gov/publications/nrp/upload/smallbook_pdf.pdf
Taylor-Goh, S. (2005). Royal college of speech and language therapists: Clinical guidelines. United Kingdom: Speechmark.